NHS Tayside staff demonstrate the hood: from left, Dr Rasads Misirovs, ENT Surgeon Rodney Mountain, Dr Ruqqash Naveed

NHS Tayside staff demonstrate the hood: from left, Dr Rasads Misirovs, ENT Surgeon Rodney Mountain, Dr Ruqqash Naveed

A company better known for producing waterproofs and other outdoor wear has turned its skills to providing protection for healthcare professionals.

Keela Outdoors has collaborated with NHS Tayside and Scottish Health Innovations to develop a hood for use during resuscitation.

The Sarus-CPR hold cuts down the risk of transmission of viruses and bacteria to first responders while carrying out cardiopulmonary resuscitation – particularly important during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Fife-based outdoor brand has worked with the health organisations to design and develop the device. The Sarus-CPR hood consists of an anaesthetic mask and viral filters that are integrated into the textile-based hood to allow for ‘bag and mask’ airway ventilation.

The double drawstring neck closure, with ‘tension stop control’ is designed to avoid overtightening around the neck. The device has been designed with an integrated, closed oral suction tube to remove oral fluids such as saliva, blood and vomitus, while a viral air escape filter has been added to reduce air contamination, should air pressure build up within the hood.

The hood has been designed to allow trained CPR responders to easily fit it onto a collapsed patient as soon as they arrive on the scene. This helps to also reduce the time taken to initiate airway ventilation and makes resuscitation much safer for both patients and personnel.

Keela managing director Ruwan Fernando said: “We were delighted to be approached by NHS Tayside to be part of the Sarus-CPR hood project. Our team of designers worked in collaboration with the NHS to design, prototype, and engineer the Safer Airway Resuscitation Hood.

“The device itself is made up of existing CPR airway components encapsulated within a protective barrier hood allowing for efficient adoption in a clinical setting. With the support, guidance, and funding of SHIL, we are thrilled to be able to reveal and launch the Sarus-CPR hood.”

Keela has previously supported the NHS by manufacturing personal protective equipment at its Glenrothes site. At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the team expanded the company’s facilities by 10,000 sq ft and created 50 new jobs to keep up with demand and adhere to social-distancing guidelines. Using Scottish-produced fabric from Cupar Angus, the team dispatched PPE to the NHS on a weekly basis.

NHS Tayside’s medical director and inventor of the hood, Professor Peter Stonebridge, said: “Frontline healthcare workers and care-givers have been absolutely vital to our response to the pandemic and out of all of the challenges of managing the spikes of Covid-19, there has been a lot of innovation in healthcare.

“Thanks to the input of other experts in manufacturing and design, the kernel of an idea has been developed into the Sarus-CPR hood and I am very grateful to all the collaborators on this project.”

The NHS Tayside team shows off the Sarus hood

The NHS Tayside team shows off the Sarus hood

Rod Mountain, NHS Tayside clinical lead for the project, said: “As an NHS worker, I am immensely proud to have been part of its development. This has been a genuine collaborative effort between NHS Tayside and Keela, drawing upon fantastic local engineering and garment manufacturing expertise.

“Covid-19 drove the innovation, prompting us to look at different approaches to PPE, but we now believe its applications go well beyond the current pandemic.”

Robert Rea, head of innovation at SHIL, said: “The Sarus-CPR hood is a real testament to home-grown collaborative expertise, taking clinician-led insight from the NHS and turning it into a tangible device that’s now ready to be launched onto the market.

“The teams at NHS Tayside and Keela have played a vital role in realising that ambition. Their clinical and manufacturing expertise combined with SHIL’s intellectual property and commercialisation expertise has accelerated launch onto the market.”

As part of the development process the hood has undergone extensive trials. It is expected the Sarus-CPR hood will be available for use across the UK later this year.

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